United States Submarine Veterans, Inc.

Pocono Base – Meeting Minutes

Wednesday, 18 October 2006

Meeting called to order at 1907 by Base Commander Rich Holmes at the Marine Corps. League Museum in Scranton, PA.
The Purpose of the Organization was read. The Base Bell was tolled once for the following US Submarine Force Losses during the Month of October:
20 Oct 1923    USS O-5                                  SS   66                             3 Men
07 Oct 1943    USS S-44                                SS 155                           56 Men
11 Oct 1943    USS Wahoo                            SS 238                           79 Men
12 Oct 1943    USS Dorado                            SS 248                           78 Men
03 Oct 1944    USS Seawolf II                       SS 197                         102 Men
17 Oct 1944    USS Escolar                            SS 294                           82 Men
24 Oct 1944    USS Darter                             SS 227                             0 Men
24 Oct 1944    USS Tang                                SS 306                           83 Men
24 Oct 1944    USS Shark II                           SS 314                           90 Men
A moment of silence followed and an invocation was given by Rich Holmes.
The Chief of the Boat led the members in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.
Roll Call: Members present were: Rich Holmes, Mike Smith, Bill Klose, Bill Hannon and Steve Vergalito.
Guests: None.
The secretary confirmed that a quorum was present.
The Minutes: The secretary read the minutes from the September meeting
1st motion to accept the minutes made by Bill Hannon, 2nd motion made by Rich Holmes.  Motion carried.
Treasurer’s Report:  The base treasurer reported an ending balance of $3076.65 on 30 Sept 2006.
Committee Reports:
            Membership:  John Saeli sent an e-mail stating that we now have 44 members.
            Parades: Next parade should be the Veterans Day Parade in November in Wilkes-Barre.  The date of the parade is Sunday, 12 Nov. 2006.
Further information will be coming, as we get closer to the date.  We do not have any information about the Armed Forces day Parade in Scranton next year.
There is a rumor that it will not be held due to lack of turnout.
Rich brought up the e-mail from the USSVI National Scholarship Committee. Most of us with e-mail should have received it. Rich will include this in his newsletter.

We also received a letter via Bob Vaughan from United Veterans Organization of Monroe County, inviting us to attend the Veterans Day Ceremony at Courthouse Square on Saturday 11 Nov 2006. We have not attended this in the past due to schedule conflicts.

Frank McDevitt received a letter from Tunkhannock Township inviting us to join all veterans, armed forces personnel and their families at an unveiling of the Armed Forces Monument at the Tunkhannock Municipal Building on Saturday 11 Nov 2006.

Rich also received another e-mail stating that time is running out for National and Base dues. All dues must be in by 31 Dec 2006. Rich stated that he has some dues applications for anyone who needs one. Dues are $35 for National and Base or $15 if you are a Life Member.
Old Business:
Rich Holmes made mention that the letter we sent to Mr. White was really asking for response to the plate fee. Rich feels that this is what we voted on and not to take any action that we would take, but we disagreed with the way in which the issue was handled. We basically wanted them to answer our letter. The letter itself was pretty self-explanatory. John Saeli did read most of the letter at last months meeting.   Rich Holmes wrote to Jack Ensminger that we had some differences of opinion, that we were upset, and that we had never received any response. Rich stated that there will be some folks attending the D2/D5 meeting and that they don’t speak directly for Rich Holmes. Rich has some concerns about raising the issue at this point beyond getting an answer to the letter.  Jack wrote back stating that he felt that what that base did was wrong, but considers it a dead issue at this point.
Regarding the trailer, Frank believes we can leave it where it is. Frank is asking for options if anyone has indoor storage for the trailer.
The only issue regarding obtaining a torpedo is the transportation and cost of transportation. Based upon last months’ minute, Gerald stated that he tried to contact the person in Little Rock, but his contact was busy preparing for the convention at the time. Rich is concerned about the weight of the torpedo and any restrictions about transporting it. We have access to trailers, but are concerned with the length of the MK14 as well. Rich stated that his son lives in Tennessee off of Rte. 40 in Holiday and is a trucker. Rich might ask him if he could help us with it. Bill Hannon brought up the point of where are we going to put the torpedo. Rich would like to see it become part of the memorial at Tobyhanna. The depot is building another memorial across the street from the existing one, and thinks that it would be nice to have a presence there if we could do it.
Rich still wants to go ahead with the float and was wondering if we could work on it at the Depot hobby shop. Bill Hannon stated that the space is limited and that the gentleman that works there only assists with cars and that it is an in and out type of deal. Steve brought up the idea of using expandable foam instead. Rich Holmes brought up the idea of using an inflatable sub and filling it with the expanding foam. This would give us the basic form, then we could paint it and or finish it the way we like.
 John Saeli sent Rich Holmes an e-mail regarding the Longevity Pins. John states that he can get them for $64 for 32 pins for our members. We decided to table this until the next meeting due to small attendance tonight. John stated that he has the pins and would like the base to pay for them. Rich stated that if anyone would like one to pay for them ourselves.
New Business:          
Rich Holmes stated that he does not know if Tom Shields is going to be available to cater our Christmas Dinner this year.
He is looking for ideas on where we can hold it if people are still interested in the dinner.
Good of the Order:
We would like to try to go visit Grover Kiick sometime in the future. Grover would love to see some of us. The times to visit him would be on a Monday or Thursday afternoons.
Next meeting will be held at 1900 on Wednesday 15 Nov. 2006 at the American Legion, Wilson-Fisher Post in Pocono Pines, PA.
Rich Holmes entertained a motion to adjourn.  1st motion made by Steve Vergalito, 2nd motion made by Bill Hannon. Motion carried.
Rich Holmes led the recitation of the Creed of USSVI.
A moment of silence followed in lieu of a closing prayer.
Rich Holmes declared the meeting of the Pocono Base adjourned.
The meeting was adjourned at 1947 hrs.
Respectfully submitted,
Michael D. Smith
USSVI – Pocono Base Secretary